Release Date: 20/10/2012
Author: Roy Cathcart
IN THEIR first match in Qualifying Group Four of the Women's Under 19 European Championship, Northern Ireland had a magnificent 2-0 victory over second seeds Poland at Buk, Hungary.
Northern Ireland started off brightly and took the lead in the 12th minute when captain Simon Magill picked up a loose ball thirty-five yards out, and spotting that the Polish 'keeper had advanced from her line, fired home a magnificent long-range shot.
Thirteen minutes later Northern Ireland doubled their lead when Kirsty McGuinness, not for the first time, out-paced the Polish defence down the left flank and sent over a perfect cross for the onrushing Magill to stroke home her second of the match.
The score line remained the same until the interval, but throughout the second half Poland had the ascendancy as Northern Ireland was constantly tested by the skilful and swift Polish forward line.
It was a typical backs-to-the-wall performance in which Alex Hurst and Jessica Foy were outstanding, and best of all in a Player of the Match performance was goalkeeper Rebecca Galbraith making her competitive debut at this level.
On Monday Northern Ireland play Tournament hosts and top seeds Hungary, 3-0 winners over Lithuania in what is sure to be another competitive match.
National Women's Coach Alfie Wylie said after today’s match, "I was delighted by the way we took control early and established our lead, then when the Poles attacked in numbers as we expected, we defended with great discipline and spirit to keep our lead.
"It was a great team performance, indeed a typical battling Northern Ireland performance and I am proud of the attitude my players showed today."
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